Think before you speak! - Divorce and Children
Divorce and children are a complicated, emotional pair. Nothing weighs more on divorcing parents’ minds then how the divorce will affect their children. Many parents stay with a spouse they are no longer committed to, love, or from whom they suffer physical and emotional abuse because they are so terrified of how divorce will affect their children.
There are various theories how best to break the news to your children about divorce, then there is the court’s opinion. The court does not want parents talking to their children about the court proceedings, or what mommy or daddy said in a hearing, or any of the drama occurring because of the divorce. The court believes, when it comes to divorce and children, it is in the best interest of the child to only speak in very general terms about divorce. The details of the divorce, or reasons behind the divorce should not involve them, in the court’s view.
Children do not need the details of your divorce, before, during or after. However, it is appropriate to talk to your children about the emotions you both feel. The emotions of sadness, loss, anger, resentment, and betrayal are difficult for adults (who have all the details) to process and understand. Imagine how difficult it must be for your child, who does not have your life experiences or knowledge to work on.
Children, especially very young children, need to feel secure in the present and future. They need to know what to expect day to day, which is why psychologists and medical doctors recommend keeping children on a daily schedule to help reduce behavioral, sleep, and eating problems. Talk with your child about what is going to happen next, not about what happened to cause the divore. Children should be reassured of your love and commitment to them. By talking with your children about how you feel, explaining it is acceptable and expected to feel that way, then they can feel okay to accept their own feelings and learn to cope with them.
A family court always has the best interest of the child as the top priority, and when it comes to divorce and children, you should to. Always put your child’s needs first and address any emotional stress early with love, understanding and commitment. Seek professional help if needed, or if you need assistance in learning how to communicate with your child.
For legal advice on the divorce process and to answer your questions about divorce and children, contact the Ohio Divorce Attorney, Jamie L. Anderson, to schedule a free in-office or telephone consultation at (937)879-9542.